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Delta Delta Delta Fraternity only had four years to make good on its $1 million pledge to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
Tri Delta had committed themselves in 2002 to raising the money to endow the Teen Room at St. Jude by 2006. They were sure they could reach their goal in four years. They were wrong.
On May 23, 2005, approximately 50 members from the fraternity came to St. Jude to present that $1 million check—a year ahead of Tri Delta's expectations. They also unveiled a special plaque that will be displayed in the Teen Room.
"We are very excited to not only fulfill our pledge to St. Jude, but to do it a year early," said Tri Delta President Michelle Shimberg. "We were exceedingly impressed by the commitment of our Tri Delta members to not only take part in raising money for St. Jude in order for us to reach our $1 million endowment," said Shimberg. "But we were also impressed by how committed they were to sharing in the St. Jude mission of finding and administering effective treatments for childhood cancer for children across the country."
The money will be used as an endowment of the St. Jude Teen Room. The Teen Room is a safe haven for patients to get away from parents, nurses, and doctors and be with kids their own age. For teenagers, hospitalization causes more dependence on parents and isolation from peers - just at a time they are asserting their independence. But the Teen Room counters that, giving the teenage patients of St. Jude a place all their own.
The Teen Room is equipped with Internet, video games, stereos, games and lots of lounging areas that teenagers love.
"We were very excited when we first formed a partnership with Tri Delta," said David L. McKee, chief operating officer of ALSAC, the fund-raising arm of St. Jude. "And today we see why. At St. Jude, we strive to keep patients lives as normal as possible, such as treating them on an outpatient basis. The Teen Room is another way to maintain that sense of normalcy during a very difficult time. Thanks to Tri Delta for their dedication and their hard work at helping St. Jude continue its mission of finding cures and saving children."
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